30 November 2022, Virtual
12 December 2022, etc.venues Monument, London
Business Travel Show Europe, presented by The BTN
Ryanair has admitted that it is flying its aircraft "more slowly" to save money as its fuel bill continues to rise.
The airline's chief financial officer Howard Millar told the Financial Times that it was reducing fuel use by flying at a lower speed which was adding about two minutes per hour of flight time.
"We're flying slightly slower but what we're seeing is we're burning less fuel," added Millar. "Fuel is our single biggest cost so we have a proportionately bigger problem than everybody else from these higher fuel prices."
He made his comments as Ryanair blamed higher fuel prices and an early Easter for a 21 per cent fall in pre-tax profits during the last quarter.
The no-frills carrier saw profits fall to €88.5 million in the three months to the end of June – compared to a pre-tax profit of €112.5 million for the same period in 2012.
The airline said that revenue had risen by 5 per cent year-on-year to €1.34 billion while passenger numbers were up by 3 per cent to 23.2 million during the quarter.
Ancillary revenue rose by 25 per cent to €357 million due to the growth of reserved seating and priority boarding, as well as higher administration and credit card fees.
Ryanair is predicting that its passenger traffic will rise by 81.5 million for its current financial year which runs until the end of March 2014. It is currently predicting a profit after tax of between €570 million to €600 million for the 2013/14 financial year.
Chief executive Michael O’Leary said: “We are in ongoing negotiations with MAG, the new owners of Stansted airport, to reverse six years of record traffic declines, but there is no guarantee that any deal will be agreed.”
“Our seven new bases Eindhoven and Maastricht (Holland), Krakow (Poland), Zadar (Croatia), Chania (Greece), Marrakesh and Fez (Morocco) are performing well.”
Ryanair is planning to add new routes in Germany, Italy, Spain, Poland and Scandinavia later this year.
O’Leary said there were “significant growth opportunities” in markets where other airlines were cutting back.
“We plan to announce more new routes and new bases later this year as we exploit significant growth opportunities in markets where competitors including Air Berlin, Alitalia, Iberia, LOT, and SAS are cutting back,” added O’Leary.